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  • How Will You Measure Your Life?

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  • How Will You Measure Your Life?

    How Will You Measure Your Life  is a book by Clayton M. Christensen, James Allworth, and Karen Dillon.  If you are like me, you may be too busy living your life to have time to measure your life.  But maybe that isn’t always good.

    The authors are all connected with Harvard Business School. Since seven presidents have come from Harvard, including Bush and Obama, maybe they have insights that can propel us to such lofty achievements.

    The authors focus on three areas:

    1. Finding happiness in your career.
    2. Finding happiness in your relationships.
    3. Staying out of jail.

    Interesting choices. Happiness in your career make sense because the authors are from the business school.  Happiness in your relationships make sense because in business you can’t make it on your own. But, staying out of jail?

    Their point is that you can’t anticipate all the circumstances and moral dilemmas you will find yourself in throughout your life.  We will face a series of small, everyday decisions that rarely seem like they have high stakes attached.  But over time, they can play out far more dramatically.  This made sense to me.  I see this every day in the businesses I own and in the businesses I work with.  The consequences of small decisions, over time, have dramatic results.  Maybe not real jail but business jail.  The most common one I see is accountability.

    Have you ever created a business plan?  You diligently laid out the steps to execute the plan. You assigned staff accountable duties, responsibilities, goals, and due dates.  You then had great expectations for results.  At the end of the plan, you realized it was a great failure, that you are now further away from your goals than when you started.

    Why does this happen?  As the leader and manager, we make small decisions (“I’m too busy to meet with my staff”, “That can wait”, etc.) that have dramatic results (“My staff isn’t doing the right things”, “What are they thinking?”).  No one likes being in this business jail.  We are in this spot because staff was assigned accountable functions but no one actually held them accountable.

    If you are a business owner or manager and you want to know “How Will You Measure Your Life?” you need to have a plan.   The plan needs to include:  building a team of professionals that provide great products and services at a profit.

    When we are involved with clients in business coaching, we help them understand that:

    1. Building a team involves leadership, structure, training, and communication.
    2. Providing great products and services involves being responsive, reliable, empathetic as well as having great tangibles, and offering great assurances.
    3. Having a profitable company involves: a clear vision, a rolling budget, good management, targeted marketing and effective systems and processes.

    The goal is to help them measure themselves as a business success. 

    What is your plan to stay out of business jail?

    Contact me if you’d like to learn more about this topic.

    Rick Vanden Heuvel, CPA, CEO Coach


    07/30/2018